Ohio Biographies

Harrison Hefner

Harrison Hefner was born in Ross County, in the year 1834, and when about four years old was brought to Allen County by his parents, Isaac and Mary Hefner. He married a daughter of William Ice, whose children were Andrew, Jennie and Mahala. Mr. Hefner has five brothers--Jacob, Amos, David, John and Albert--and one sister, Clarissa. He has four children--Annie M., Charles E., Jennie A. and Frank.


From 1875 Historical Atlas of Allen County, Ohio, by H. H. Hardesty & Co. Publishers, Chicago.



Harison Hefner, a retired farmer residing at LaFayette whose portrait is herewith shown, was for many years actively engaged in farming and stock-raising. His homestead a tract of 200 acres is situated in section 19, Jackson township. He also owns another farm of 200 acres. He is a native of Colerain township, Ross County, Ohio, where he was born December 25, 1834, and is a son of Isaac and Mary (May) Hefner, both of whom were natives of Pennsylvania.

When a young man Isaac Hefner located in Ross County with is parents being among its first white settlers. There he married Mary May. When he came to Allen County with his wife and children in 1840, he was a poor man, and could neither read nor write; but he possessed a shrewd business sense which enabled him to see and take advantage of the opportunities offered and which placed him among the leading men of his time and section. On coming to this county, he entered 80 acres of land from the government and dealt extensively in cattle. He added to his acreage from time to time until he became a very large land owner. He possessed at the time of his death about 1800 acres all of the land being in Bath and Jackson townships. He was a Democrat, but did not take an active part in politics. He was a member and liberal supporter of the Reformed Church, furnishing the timber for the erection of the first log church which was built. Later he donated the land when the present edifice was erected for both church and cemetery, and contributed to the building fund for the brick church. He passed away in 1884 at the age of 75 years. His wife survived him many years, dying in 1901 at the advanced age of 94 years. Two of their nine children died in infancy. The seven who grew to maturity and are still living are as follows: Jacob, of Jackson township, whose sketch appears elsewhere in this work; Harison; Amos, of Auglaize township; Clarissa, wife of Jacob Mowery, of Bath township; David, of Bath township; and John and Albert, of Jackson township.

Harison Hefner has been a resident of Jackson township since his sixth year. He remained with his parents until his marriage when he purchased 37½ acres of land in partnership with his brother Amos. Later he bought his brother's share and converted the property into a most desirable homestead by building an attractive brick residence and two large barns, with other improvements to correspond. As he prospered he added to the farm from time to time until he owned 1,000 acres, 120 of which was in Auglaize and 160 in Perry township, the remainder being in Jackson. Most of this large tract has been turned over to his children; he still retains 400 acres, 200 being included in the homestead. He has been a successful breeder of thoroughbred shorthorn cattle for many years.

On April 30, 1861, Mr. Hefner and Mahala Ice where joined in marriage. She was a daughter of Samuel Ice and a native of Auglaize township, Allen County, Ohio. Her death, which occurred December 22, 1901, at the age of 60 years, was felt as a personal loss by all who knew her. Her children were as follows: Anna, wife of Lige Frederick; Charles E.; Samuel Martin, deceased; John G., deceased; Jennie Alice, wife of Jacob Bogot; Brice B.; Willard; and Harry H., who cultivates the homestead farm. Mr. Hefner has been a life- long Democrat, and has served as trustee of his township for three years. He is a member of the Reformed Church and one of the most influential men of Allen County.


From History of Allen County, Ohio and Representative Citizens, Part 2, Edited & Compiled by Charles C. Miller, Ph. D.; Richmond & Arnold, Publishers, Chicago, 1906